Zero Year continues forward and it’s really starting to heat up. The last few issues were getting better and better with big promises on the horizon. Is it good?

Batman #23 (DC Comics)

Batman #23 Cover

Bruce Wayne’s headquarters has been bombed and he has been utterly wrecked by the Red Hood Gang — in more ways than one. As he stumbles back to the manor, he will soon be making a choice that’ll change him forever. Then in the backup, we venture back into the past somewhere in Norway where a young Bruce in a long winded Death Match. There, as one person puts it, he’ll either have to die or learn to kill.

Batman 23 01
Thankfully, he has a couple gallons worth of blood in him, so he doesn’t immediately die along the way.

Not much happened in this issue, but what did happen was very important (and you probably know why judging by that last paragraph). It makes sense why this issue was lighter on the plot because of it, so the lack of progression for most of the storylines can be kind of excused, even if that is a bit of a disappointment. The other bits that did happen besides the decision were pretty solid and good character moments.

The rest of the writing was actually pretty darn good this time around. It was lighter on the dialogue this time around, except during two scenes (which were too much trouble), and allowed the art to tell more of the story. The dialogue itself was pretty good, with a particular great moment when Alfred was talking with Bruce. The pacing was pretty solid; the cliffhanger was great; the flashback fit well with the story going on; and the backup tale was very enjoyable, ending on a moment that made me smile.

Batman 23 02
Spears? Lady, screws your spears!

The art on this comic was really beautiful and great this time around. With less dialogue boxes and internal monologue in many scenes, it allows the art to capture the mood, feeling, and emotion being displayed in the environments and characters very well. The action was well drawn, in particular with the fight scene in backup. The use of color and inking stood out a lot, with the tones and shades used.

Batman 23 03
Getting beat up has never looked this colorful before.


  • Tons of great moments and character bits.
  • Strong writing.
  • Wonderful art.
  • While important, this issue didn’t progress a lot of the story.
  • Just how much blood does the human body have?!

Is It Good?

Without a doubt. This is easily the best issue of Batman this year and really gets me pumped to see more. With actual good dialogue and toning down on it in the right scenes, great moments, amazing artwork, a fantastic backup, and more; this title is on fire. Hopefully it’ll be enough to keep us satisfied until after Villain’s Month.